11 Key Terms That Will Sharpen Your Digital Marketing IQ

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How wide is your knowledge of digital marketing? Start by mastering the mostly used key terms in the industry:

1. Native advertising

A native ad is any paid online advertising placement that is virtually indistinguishable from other material in the channel in which it is being presented — essentially an advertorial.

2. CTR

It stands for click-through rate, which represents the number of people who clicked on a link (typically in an ad, email or web page) divided by the number of people who saw the link (# of clicks ÷ # of impressions).

The average click-through rate for online display ads across all industries is closest to 0.10%. That means one in every 1,000 people who see an online ad are clicking on it.

3. Bounce ratemarketing-rate

Bounce rates are typically measured for both websites and emails. Anytime an email is rejected by the recipient’s server, it’s called a bounce. A “bounce” also occurs when a website visitor looks only at a single page, doesn’t interact with it (no clicks), and then leaves the site quickly thereafter (typically a few seconds). The “bounce rate” is expressed as a percentage of the total email or website visits that resulted in a bounce.

4. Pre-roll advertising

Pre-roll is a form of online advertising where users are shown a video commercial in front of another online video that they want to watch. These ads may be skippable, and the vast majority of users will skip a pre-roll ad when possible. However, anywhere from 60% to 80% of those who don’t skip a pre-roll ad will watch it to the end. The click-through rate for pre-roll ads is typically 3 to 10 times better than the CTR for online display ads.

5. CPCcost per click

It stands for cost-per-click, a common way to calculate the relative cost of online ads, where you divide the cost of the ad by the number of clicks the ad generated.

6. CPM

It stands for cost per thousand, an online advertising pricing model where advertisers are charged $X.XX for every 1,000 times their ad is seen/shown. Publishers like this pricing model because they get paid whether someone clicks on their ad or not. The “M” in “CPM” is derived from the Latin word for 1,000 (mille).

7. Programmatic advertising

Programmatic advertising is any automated method of buying, placing and optimising online ads. Programmatic models replace the traditional process that involved phone calls, human negotiations and manual insertion orders. Instead, advertisers buy space based on a set of pre-defined parameters (such as audience criteria, daily ad budget); ads are shown to users based on available data and past behaviours. Through programmatic technologies, advertisers can buy ads the same way they buy something on Amazon — with a click and a credit card.

8. Remarketing

Remarketing (aka retargeting) is the process of delivering advertising messages to people who have previously interacted with your marketing. For instance, if someone clicks on a link in an email marketing campaign for a home loan, they may see an online display ad for your mortgage rates somewhere else on the web shortly thereafter.

9. Content gating

Gating content is one of the most popular forms of lead generation in the digital marketer’s toolbox. Typically, a marketer offers people valuable content (such as a white paper, eBook, how-to video, or tip sheet) in exchange for the user’s contact information. This may require users to create an account and/or sign up for an email distribution list (or have done so previously). In other words, the marketer is essentially telling someone, “You can only access the information you want after I’ve learned something about you.” For instance, some online publications will gate their content in such a way that users are only able to read an article after answering a survey question, thereby allowing the publisher to gather relevant socio-demographic statistics on their audience.

10. Open rate

In email marketing, how is it typically calculated? It’s essentially impossible to determine if someone has actually read your email. However, when a bulk email marketing message is sent out, it typically includes a piece of code that inserts a tiny, invisible image. Then, when a recipient downloads the image(s) included in the email, your bulk email service provider records that as an “opened” email. Also, anyone who clicks on a link in an email is recorded as an “open,” because you can assume they read at least some of your email even if they didn’t download images. (Note: Just because someone has downloaded images in an email you sent doesn’t mean they read one single word, so the “open rate” metric can be a bit misleading.)

11. Negative keyword

Negative keywords are most commonly used in paid search campaigns to minimise waste. When a user performs a search using a negative keyword, you don’t want your results (ad or website) shown. It may sound counter-intuitive, but this is particularly useful when results can be easily confused with something else. For instance, if your institution was named West Bank, you might not want to pay to have your ad(s) shown when someone searches for the West Bank in Israel, so you specify “Israel” as a negative keyword when setting up your Google AdWords campaign.

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